Released: 6th April 2018
Best tracks: Creep, The Man
At first, the debut album Goat Girl by Goat Girl looks daunting. 19 tracks coming in at only 40 minutes long seems a bit like wishful thinking. However, each track has been perfectly moulded together, and this has resulted in not only a good bunch of songs, but also a great album as a whole, something I find nowadays relatively rare to come across.
Goat Girl had big shoes to fill, having risen from the same London stomping ground as other young and upcoming bands such as Shame, HMLTD, Sorry and Fat White Family. But I am not afraid to say that they have filled them. This album is full of wonderfully murky vocal harmonies and strong drum beats throughout, resulting in a fantastic listen. Goat Girl have also been very clever at creating a sound resembling that of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Tom Petty, complimented with strong vocals throughout. It is almost hard to believe such a mature and finely tuned album could be created by a band as young as Goat Girl.
The album is full of twists and turns from beginning to end. The eerily clunky piano in the opening track of the album Salty Sounds immediately draws listeners in, and is followed by the political song Burn the Stake. This is contrasted to songs later on in the album, such as The Man and Little Liar, which are relatively upbeat. Some songs blend together so well it could almost be one song, for example the outro of Creep fits perfectly with the intro of Viper Fish.
Initially Goat Girl sounds like a brilliantly mature debut album, but under the surface it seems to be somewhat of an ode towards the currently volatile political climate in the UK, full of lyrics representing the angst and anger felt by many young people. For example, the song Burn the Stake chants above wailing background vocals and a heavy guitar the lyrics ‘Build a bonfire / Put the Tories on the top / Put the DUP in the middle / And we’ll burn the fucking lot.’ Goat Girl have a lot of opinions and are not afraid to express them; a bold move for a debut album.
It’s understandable why Goat Girl felt the need to add a political spin on their music, especially seeing as the band were signed to Rough Trade Records on the day of Brexit. However, I do find it somewhat unoriginal in the way in which they have gone about this. I like that they are singing about what is important to them, however I was slightly disappointed with the distinct lack of subtlety with the lyrics. I find it is much more of a skill for artists to be able to allude to their problems, rather than boisterously wail about them. But who knows, maybe in a few years we’ll have the new female Morrissey.
The album is wrapped up with a sultry cover of Bugsy Malone’s song Tomorrow, leaving listeners with an almost murky feeling. Goat Girl have definitely said their piece with this album, and I can’t even begin to imagine what will be in store for the future as they continue to grow as both musicians and women.